Gentle waves from the South China Sea deposit scores of sand dollars on the beach in front of Six Senses Con Dao. Opened in December, the resort is the first luxury property in Vietnam’s Con Dao archipelago, a jungle-covered 16-island chain off the country’s sleepy southeast coast. Much of the archipelago is protected as parkland, promising an enriching experience to those who make the 45-minute flight from Ho Chi Minh City.
Reflecting their pristine surroundings, the Six Senses’ 50 villas were built with sustainable materials, including reclaimed teak from Vietnam’s interior. Each has an infinity pool, padded deck loungers, and a pillow-top bed from which to admire the ocean views. Polished concrete bathtubs are roomy enough for two, while outdoor showers afford privacy among flopping palm fronds.
The resort’s guest rooms and By the Beach restaurant front a mile-long stretch of sand bordered on one side by Elephant Head cliff. Guests can climb the cliff to spot dugongs, manatee-like mammals that ancient sailors mistook for mermaids, swimming in the sea below. Six Senses offers kayaks and catamarans, as well as challenging Vietnamese basket boats, for guests to explore the sea up close. Six Senses Con Dao, +84.64.3831.222, www.sixsenses.com